Who Invented the Pinhole Camera?

The inventor of the first pinhole camera, also referred to as Camera Obscura, was known as Alhazen. He was a great authority on optics during the Middle Ages and was able to accurately explain why images in a pinhole camera were upside down.

Alhazen has been described by many as the father of modern optics, scientific methodology, experimental physics and ophthalmology. He has also been credited as the first theoretical physicist. At times he was simply referred to as “The Physicist” or by the nickname “Ptolemaeus Secundus,” which translates to “Ptolemy the Second.”

A pinhole camera is a simple optical device that is shaped like a closed chamber or box. It has a small hole on one of its sides which, through the rectilinear propagation of light, makes an image of the outside on the opposite side of the chamber or box.